Poultry farmers should be making plans for moving their birds indoors at short notice should it become necessary, said Debby Reynolds, the government’s chief vet.
Poultry meat and egg producers would be required to move their birds indoors as soon as possible if a case of highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza were found in Britain, she warned.
But she added: “We recognise the challenge that organic and free-range producers would face if their birds needed to be housed indoors. We are working with the European Commission to find ways of protecting the status of products should that happen.”